The STEM club which takes place at The Gilberd School in Colchester is an exciting and successful club that teaches pupils about Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths using fun ways to help them learn about these subjects as well as safety issues. The club is following on from the huge success and popularity of the secondary school STEM club and it was decided last year to pilot a primary school version. The club was made available to all of their feeder primary schools and they have had year 5 and 6 pupils visiting the Gilberd School every week to take part in all sorts of fun and exciting activities.
Brinkley Grove, Myland, Highwoods, St Johns are amongst the schools that have taken part so far and they are now starting the club again from November 1st.
STEM stands for Science Technology Engineering and Maths so the club covers a wide range of subjects and activities. Most importantly, the club is fun and encourages pupils to learn through experimenting and design.
The success of the Gilberd School STEM club, which currently has almost 70 members from the secondary school, led the Science department from the Gilberd School to set up a primary STEM club that could be offered to all local primary schools and their pupils. Since running the pilot club last year, there has been an excellent response so the club has now been set up to run regularly at the Gilberd School every Tuesday from 3.30 to 4.30pm.
The club is now accredited to the children’s university so any pupil that comes along can bring their learning passport which will then be stamped so they’ll receive points that lead to some fantastic rewards. Details of the scheme can be found at www.colchesterchildrensuniversity.co.uk
Many pupils from the surrounding primary schools are now coming along to the Gilberd Primary STEM club and every week they take part in all sorts of fun and exciting activities. Not only is the club supporting and enhancing their education, it also helps the pupils make friends with pupils from other primary schools and gives them a taste of secondary school. This means that when they leave primary school they know what to expect and it will be a much less daunting prospect. In fact this September the school was overwhelmed by the number of former primary STEM club members that came to the school eager and very happy due to the fact they had already been coming to the club at the school.
The club also has STEM leaders, pupils from the school who have been coming for a few years and then volunteer to become leaders and help the younger pupils and the primary school visitors. It is a great way for them to build their independence and leadership skills.
S.T.E.M club helps develop teamwork and communication skills and also encourages thinking and enquiry. The activities are often themed and have in the past covered topics like taste and senses, chemical reactions, fire safety, survival skills, bridge building, making boats, rockets and of course lots of big explosions!
The club is run by science teachers Paul Tyrrell and Rachel Noyes and also has a website www.stemclub.co.uk for more information. They would be very pleased to hear from any other pupils or primary schools that would like to get involved.
You can also go to The Gilberd school’s website www.gilberd.com which contains helpful information too.
Posted by Emily Richardson